Cambodian migrant workers in Thailand criticized Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen on Tuesday for not trying to maintain a trade scheme giving the country tariff-free access to European Union markets, a day before an expected decision by the EU on whether it will withdraw the privileges.
Thorn Sdoeurng, a laborer in Thailand, told RFA’s Khmer Service that the Cambodian people need the “Everything But Arms” (EBA) scheme, which gives developing nations access to the EU for all products except arms and ammunition, to ensure workers have jobs. He also said the people do not support Hun Sen’s notion of getting rid of the EBA.
The authoritarian leader has dismissed concerns over EU pressure to improve Cambodia’s human rights record or risk losing its preferential trade status, saying that his government is prepared to pay additional taxes without the scheme.
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